Published: Sun, June 09, 2019
Global News | By Blake Casey

Columbine High School could be torn down, to deter copycats

Columbine High School could be torn down, to deter copycats

Twenty years after the Columbine High School shooting that killed 13, administrators are suggesting tearing down the facility to discourage people compelled by a "morbid fascination" with the Littleton, Colo., school.

For Aurora resident Jennifer Witkowski and many like her, Columbine High School will always be connected with April 20, 1999.

Others include constructing the new school near the current location, west of the current site while demolishing the existing building and including enhanced safety features created to provide greater monitoring and school privacy.

"Since the morbid fascination with Columbine has been increasing over the years, rather than dissipating, we believe it is time for our community to consider this option for the existing Columbine building", Glass wrote.

Perhaps influenced by the 20th anniversary of the shooting, over the past 11 months the number of people trying to enter the school illegally or otherwise trespassing on school property has been increasing - now to record levels... STEM School Highlands Ranch in neighboring Douglas County experienced a shooting where one student died and eight were injured in May.

Dorn added that changing the building designs or landscapes can make sites less appealing and reduce security exposure.

"Columbine High School has a gravitational-pull for these sorts of individuals", Glass wrote. An FBI official said at the time that Pais had an "infatuation" with the Columbine massacre and represented a "credible threat", causing multiple schools to implement lockouts, with classes continuing while outer doors are locked.

Michael Dorn, Executive Director for non-profit campus safety center Safe Havens International, said to The Daily Caller News Foundation Friday he was not sure if replacing the school was the proper course of action.

The new district proposals include demolishing the current site and rebuilding a school just to the west, keeping Columbine's name, colours and mascot. Majority are there to satisfy curiosity or a macabre, but harmless, interest in the school.

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Frank DeAngelis, 64, who served as Columbine's principal at the time of the massacre, said Glass had contacted him for his opinion on the proposal.

Discussions about the plan are now "in the very preliminary and exploratory stages", while Board of Education and administration officials seek public feedback. "It's those of us who were there 20 years ago who carry a message of hope into this world".

Not surprisingly, security was also a key consideration in the construction.

Other survivors have made a decision to maintain mass shooting sites to honor victims. "We all have those", he says.

William Beck, a student survivor, told CNN he "hated" the idea of demolition, saying, "Even though something bad happened there, it is a special place to me". And I think that's what Dr.

"There's a deep sense of pride that comes with Columbine and the "We are Columbine" name, and the whole spirit that comes with the school", Glass said.

The Sandy Hook Elementary School, where in 2012 a gunman killed 26 children and staffers with a Bushmaster AR-15 rifle before killing himself, was demolished two years later and a new school was built.

Police vehicles are stationed outside the school following the shooting at the Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) School in Highlands Ranch, Colorado, U.S., May 8, 2019.

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